Patricia “Pat” Eltman was born in Portland, Maine on August 22, 1950 and grew up in South Portland. After graduating high school, she worked for the telephone company doing secretarial work, and then attended the University of Southern Maine. She worked for Peter Curran’s state legislative campaign in 1974 and 1976, and in 1979 began working on presidential campaigns. She was Chief of Staff for Speaker of the Maine House, John Martin. Also in 1979, she worked for Regional Transportation. In 1980, she became deputy state director for the Carter-Mondale campaign and in 1984 worked on the Mondale-Ferraro campaign. In 1986 she ran Jim Tierney’s campaign for governor and in 1988 became Special Assistant to John Martin. She worked for Speaker of the House Libby Mitchell, and on the “Get Out the Vote” campaign. She also worked as a consultant in Public Relations for the Public Affairs Group in Portland and as the Regional Political Director for Al Gore in the Midwest.
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Beam, Greg, "Eltman, Patricia "Pat" oral history interview" (2000). Edmund S. Muskie Oral History Collection. 126.